Megan Risdal

Megan Risdal
Data analyst, Campos Inc.
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Recent Posts

“Adulting Hard!” Using Data Science to Learn the Why and How of this Millennial Trend

Posted by Megan Risdal on 8/25/16 12:04 PM
When you hear someone sigh (or tweet) the phrase, “Adulting is soo hard,” you immediately know you’re listening to a Millennial. Ever the wordsmiths, Generation Y young adults have turned the noun “adult” into a verb (to adult) and back into a noun (adulting). As one of the American Dialect Society’s nominated words of the year in 2015, the popular word is a sign of the times. In this blog post, I take a data-driven approach to understanding this phenomenon using some natural language processing techniques.
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Topics: Data

How to Bring Your Customers' Stories to Life Using Data

Posted by Megan Risdal on 6/15/16 1:46 PM

How do you make hard data into something personal? Reams of transactional records can seem like a cold and detached way to get to know your customers. But, analyzed over time, the dollars and interactions add up to reveal patterns in behavior which can be used to construct personas reflecting real people, their defining traits, and the value they represent. Who is your typical customer versus the most likely big spender, and what makes them different?

Making data personal is, well, a personal passion of mine. As a former quantitative researcher studying linguistics, I spent my time taking measurements of speech data and building statistical models at a computer terminal. What made this endeavor a social science was revealing stories of how social and geographic groups of people subconsciously construct identities through the measurable nuances in their speech.

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Topics: Understanding Your Customer, Data

Visualizing Data: 3 Reasons Why Seeing Is Believing

Posted by Megan Risdal on 3/24/16 2:12 PM
Many clients come to us without a clear picture of 1) what to do with their data or 2) how to get it organized enough to extract information which will then guide business decisions. I recently attended a Tableau User Group meeting hosted at CMU where the theme was, "Data Discovery and Predictive Analytics." I was happy that speaker (and 2014 Tableau “Zen Master”), Dan Murray, spent much more time on the former than the latter. Why? Predictive analytics is extremely en vogue! Because deeply understanding your data first is paramount to unlocking its insights and turning them into action.
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Topics: Understanding Your Customer, Data

Would a Chip of Another Crunch Taste as Fresh?

Posted by Megan Risdal on 11/5/15 1:09 PM

It may come as no surprise to marketers of consumer packaged goods that there’s a whole field of research dedicated to studying perceptions of the sounds and shapes of products—the crispy crunch of a chip and “ktsch-h-h-h-h-h” of an aerosol underarm spray. How do you feel when you hear the fizzy (or flat?) crack of a can of soda? Does a yellower hue of a can of 7UP lead you to experience a more lemony flavor?

A recent article in The New Yorker, “Accounting for Taste, dishes the details of this highly scientific enterprise into how curved shapes augment consumer perception of sweetness and other “sensation transferences,” as marketers call them. The goal in all of this is to help producers benefit from multi-sensory perception of products—from their color, the shape of their packaging, the sounds they emit, and the feelings (touch and emotional) they give us—in order to evoke an appealing impression of the brand.

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Topics: Brand Planning, Behavioral Economics, Data

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